Whitney Downard

Whitney Downard

A native of upstate New York, Whitney previously covered statehouse politics for CNHI’s nine Indiana papers, focusing on long-term healthcare facilities and local government. Prior to her foray into Indiana politics, she worked as a general assignment reporter for The Meridian Star in Meridian, Mississippi. Whitney is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University (#GoBonnies!), a community theater enthusiast and cat mom.

Managed care transition set to go live July 2024

By: - October 2, 2023

As Hoosiers are getting older and Indiana’s long-term care system evolves to embrace the needs of a more complicated population, state officials are finalizing a potential $15 billion worth of contracts pivoting to managed care. Managed care is a model for delivering health care services, ranging from in-home offerings to institutionalized care like nursing homes. […]

Sandlin honored in Statehouse memorial service

By: - September 29, 2023

Dozens of lawmakers, Statehouse staffers, family members and state leaders gathered at the Statehouse Friday to honor the service of Sen. Jack Sandlin, 72, who died unexpectedly earlier this month. “Let me be clear: he would have hated this,” Sen. Aaron Freeman, a close colleague and fellow Republican, said, jokingly. Sandlin’s service lasted just 30 […]

Maxwell sworn in to Indiana Senate, succeeds Perfect

By: - September 28, 2023

Indiana’s newest State Sen. Randy Maxwell, a Republican from Guilford, was sworn in Thursday by Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Loretta Rush, succeeding Sen. Chip Perfect, of Lawrenceburg, who resigned earlier this year. Maxwell will serve the remainder of Perfect’s term through November 2026 and represents all of Dearborn, Jefferson, Ohio, Scott and Switzerland counties […]

AARP ranks Indiana in the middle for long-term care system services

By: - September 28, 2023

A new report from AARP ranking each state’s system for long-term care placed Indiana in the middle of the pack — the third of five tiers of rankings that considered support for family caregivers and diversity of in home- and community-based services.  Indiana came in 27th, an improvement from its 2020 ranking of 44th. The […]

Holcomb: Indiana prepared for possible federal government shutdown

By: - September 27, 2023

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb told the press Wednesday that the state was prepared for what appears to be an imminent federal government shutdown that would impact nearly 24,000 Hoosiers — most of whom are employed by cabinet-level agencies. “I hope it doesn’t (happen) … this is avoidable if cooler heads prevail,” Holcomb said at a […]

Uncertain future for providers as child care crisis looms

By: - September 27, 2023

As the director of Bridges Transition Childcare in Evansville, Vanessa Quarles wears many hats.  She writes the grants, coordinates training to comply with those grants, pays the bills, purchases curricular materials, covers for sick employees and hires personnel — the latter of which includes Facebook ads, distributing fliers and visiting local colleges to recruit applicants. […]

Number of Hoosiers without health insurance declines

By: - September 21, 2023

The number of Hoosiers without health insurance decreased between 2021 and 2022, falling 0.6% to 7% uninsured, according to a release from the United States Census Bureau.  “For seven of the states with lower uninsured rates in 2022, the difference was driven by increased private coverage. For 10 states, the uninsured rate decrease was related […]

senate senate registration registration

Fifth Congressional District sees another candidate

By: - September 11, 2023

When U.S. Rep. Victoria Spartz declined to run for re-election, she opened up her Fifth Congressional District seat for the taking — with the list growing to four candidates following a weekend announcement. Raju Chinthala, a speech-language pathologist and business owner, released an advertisement Saturday proclaiming his intention to run for the vacancy. “I will […]

Chambers launches first campaign ad

By: - September 7, 2023

The newest gubernatorial entry, Brad Chambers, released his first campaign ad Thursday — sharing a message that was heavy on identity but slim on platform specifics as he seeks to gain name recognition with potential voters. His campaign said the one-minute video was backed by a seven-figure ad buy across the state. It came just […]

Campaign finance contributions on the Indiana Supreme Court docket

By: - September 7, 2023

Jim Bopp’s anti-abortion clients haven’t been limited by Indiana campaign finance laws or restricted from making contributions, but he argued Thursday that a “plain language” reading of state statute could potentially harm political action committee activities in the future. The well-known Hoosier attorney was before the Indiana Supreme Court in a hearing determining whether Indiana’s […]

State project aims to give diapers to safety net recipients

By: - September 7, 2023

A new state-funded service project aims to get diapers into the hands of impoverished parents. Advocates hope it will improve infant health and provide indirect financial aid to the state’s neediest. The Indiana Diaper Bank, based in central Indiana, will helm the 2-year, $4 million project, which will distribute 200 diapers every other month to […]

Holcomb lauds county buy-in on public health

By: - September 5, 2023

The vast majority of Indiana’s counties opted to participate in a statewide program designed to revamp the state’s public health investment — which averages $55 per resident, far below the national average of $91 per capita. Gov. Eric Holcomb celebrated the commitment, which requires participating counties to offer several “core” public health initiatives to receive […]